Remember two words: one is action, another is activity. Action is not activity; activity is not action. Their natures are diametrically opposite. Action is when the situation demands it and you act, you respond. Activity is when the situation doesn’t matter, it is not a response; you are so restless within that the situation is just an excuse to be active.
Action comes out of silent mind–it is the most beautiful thing in the world. Activity comes out of a restless mind–it is the ugliest. Action is when it has relevance; activity is irrelevant. Action is moment to moment, spontaneous; activity is loaded with the past. It is not a response to the present moment, rather, it is pouring your restlessness, which you have been carrying around from the past, into the present. Action is creative. Activity is very destructive–it destroys you, it destroys others.
Try to see the delicate distinction. For example, you are hungry, then you eat–this is action. But you are not hungry, you don’t feel any hunger at all, and still you go on eating–this is activity….
Action is beautiful, action comes as a spontaneous response. Life needs response, every moment you have to act, but the activity comes through the present moment. You are hungry and you seek food, you are thirsty and you go to the well. You are feeling sleepy and you go to sleep. It is out of the total situation that you act. Action is spontaneous and total.
Activity is never spontaneous. It comes from the past. You may have been accumulating it for many years, and then it explodes into the present–it is not relevant. But mind is cunning; the mind will always find realizations for the activity. The mind will always try to prove that this is not activity, this is action; it was needed…. ~ OSHO, Creativity: Unleashing the Forces Within For A New Way Of Living